By returning to the cotton fields, tobacco barns, & humble dwellings of her ancestral home in the rural South, this author learned firsthand what is missing from the history books between the pages on slavery & present-day African-American culture. It is the experience of ordinary people who, on second glance, have led truly extraordinary lives. She developed an appreciation for their words, wit, & wisdom & has made it her life's work to pass along their experiences. In this collection of original short stories, she pays homage to these ordinary folks through lyrical tributes, many of which have aired or will air on National Public Radio. Beginning late this year, her own program, Just Plain Folks: Wisdom from the Front Porch, will air weekly on NPR. Like her radio segments, the stories in Just Plain Folks are meant both to entertain & to educate. Each story concludes with an author's note that places it in its proper cultural context.